Written by American author Leila Sales, This Song Will Save Your Life is about shy high school sophomore Elise Dembowski and her journey of self-discovery and maturity. After a downward spiral pushes Elise into laying low for awhile, she begins taking night-time walks to help clear her head. One night, she come across an underground dance club called Start. Through a series of events, she begins DJing at the club and meets people who show her what it’s like to have fun.

I found Elise’s stories about trying hard to get people to like you to be very relatable, since everybody has had experiences of feeling left out. Sales’ words are very realistic and raw and touches on the this song will save your lifemessage that you can’t be friends with everybody, but there’s nothing wrong with trying.

I also like the message about finding yourself by doing something you love. Elise’s love of music leads her to pursue the project of DJing. Although the concept of a sixteen-year-old getting into a club isn’t necessarily realistic, Start defies most of the cliches I’ve seen in other books. It’s nice to see a story with a club setting that doesn’t serve as a place where the protagonist gets drunk or in trouble. Rather, it’s a place where she grows and matures.

Anybody who’s a music enthusiast will appreciate the numerous songs mentioned throughout the story. I definitely recommend This Song Will Save Your Life to anybody who has ever felt left out but has a passion.

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